TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Troy officials are reminding residents to properly dispose of hazardous materials after an incident involving a garbage truck on July 20. The truck reportedly filled with heavy smoke due to hazardous acidic liquid that dissolved waste in the trash compactor.

Officials said the Troy Fire Department was called, took out the acid container, emptied the truck’s trash, and hosed down the material. A similar incident took place in April when the fire department was called to put out a fire in a garbage truck caused by large rechargeable batteries.

“For the third time this year, the city had a fire in our municipal garbage trucks caused by hazardous chemicals and other items illegally concealed and thrown away. This creates a serious risk of bodily harm to our hard-working employees and is completely unacceptable. I urge the public to refrain from throwing away dangerous materials in their household trash and instead use authorized hazardous waste disposal programs available free to Troy residents,” said Mayor Patrick Madden.

The following items are prohibited from being thrown in curbside garbage cans. Officials said if any of these items are found in a garbage can, the property owner will be fined.

  • Hazardous waste
  • Chemicals
  • Propane tanks
  • Large Batteries
  • Rechargeable Batteries
  • Volatile chemicals
  • Acids

All of these items can be safely disposed of at household hazardous waste disposal events. These events can be found on the City of Troy website.

“Dangerous materials and corrosive liquids placed in curbside garbage cans pose a unique risk to our Sanitation staff. This most recent incident – involving hydrochloric acid concealed in a black garbage bag – could have easily resulted in a serious injury or other more severe outcome for our Public Works employees. Please think twice about improperly disposing of harmful chemicals and other materials and instead sign up for upcoming household hazardous waste disposal dates,” said Commissioner of General Services Chuck Wojton.

Officials said the city cannot dispose of explosives and ammunition. Other items that shouldn’t be thrown in the trash or need careful handling include:

  • Sharp objects (knives, broken dishware, broken glass, blades) should be wrapped carefully in cardboard and tape before being thrown out.
  • Medical needles and sharps must be disposed of at the Troy Police Department Central Station (55 State Street).
  • Unused medications can be disposed of at authorized drug collection sites, including at local pharmacies. An Rx drug disposal unit is available at the Troy Police Department Central Station (55 State Street).
  • Branches/brush should be bundled and placed curbside for collection by the Department of Public Works.
  • Recyclables should be placed in a blue recycling bin and placed curbside for pickup during your weekly collection day.
  • Clothing/textiles can be recycled using available drop stations located around the city.
  • To report dead animals, you can contact Animal Control at (518) 270-4411.